Predicting like a Rove

Darren Brown in the Sydney Morning Herald called the WA election like this:

In order to form a Government, the magic number any Party or group of Parties need is 30 seats in the Lower House.

The 2008-2013 Barnett Government held precisely 30 (Lib + Nat + 1 Ind) including the Speaker who, on the first sitting day was ruled to be allowed to cast a vote if required which assured supply.

I’m predicting the new Parliament to look like this:

Liberal:               26           (+2)
Nationals:             2           (-3)
Independents:       1           (-3)
Labor:                30           (+4)

Which clearly means I’m predicting a Labor Government with a one-seat majority.

What actually happened was this: 

West Australians have given Liberal leader Colin Barnett another four years at the helm in a commanding win which the returning premier attributed, in part, to Federal Labor being “on the nose” in WA.

Meanwhile, although the Liberals gained their own majority under Barnett, the premier made it clear they were holding firm to their Nationals coalition partner.

“They have been wonderful partners in government,” he said.  “This government has been a good government… we have achieved for this state across a wide variety of portfolios.”

As Mr Barnett fronted a roaring home crowd in his electorate of Cottesloe about 9.30PM, he said the Liberal Party had retained all of its existing seats and picked up another seven in an 8.6 per cent swing.

Two electorates still hung in the balance: the Kimberley and Midland. The Kimberley in particular was “quite a unique tussle,” Mr Barnett said.

Barnett applauded a “competitive “energetic” Mark McGowan-led opposition campaign that he conceded was not “comfortable at all times” regardless of consistently one-sided polls.

Going into the election bookies had the Liberals at almost unbackable odds of $1.01 with nothing short of a landslide predicted.

This time, the pre-election polls and the bookies were right.

With more than 75 per cent of votes counted shortly before midnight late predictions had the Liberals with 30 seats, the Nationals with 6 and Labor on 18.

To his credit Darren Brown fessed up and admitted he got it wrong…an admirable trait for a commentator.



It is ok to be wrong, but to deny you were wrong like Karl Rove and the other tools who all called the US elections dead wrong is just silly.

Brown goes on to say:

Heck, who saw that coming? Oh yes, now that the counting is done it does seem everyone other than me!

I’ve already been trolled and will no doubt have more of a (possibly deserved) public savaging over the next few days, but lets just get some of the facts on the record.

I got it wrong

I predicted a Labor win and was very wrong, obviously. If you need to rub that in, please go ahead in the comments section below or by Twitter (or both if you really want to).


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  • Sir Cullen’s Sidekick

    He is the John Commie Campbell of Australia folks

  • Dave

    Its one thing the Aussies have right ATM, every state is turning away from Labour, next (hopefully) a federal win to Abbot and the Libs. Farewell Julia, suggest you call the UN to see if they have a post in Liberia for you.

  • Patrick

    I am far from an expert but any 5 year old could see Labour were going to take a bath in WA, all the polls predicted it, in fact in the last couple of weeks the conversation was around Barnett being able to govern alone. For Darren Brown to be predicting a Labour win means his allegiances need to be questioned, is he a Labour flunky in the same manner as Duncan Garner, John Campbell et al in NZ?